Tonawanda Coke on River Road continues to face several lawsuits for polluting the air. 

A community activist continues to speak out against benzene and other toxic material that spews from the facility.

"Tonawanda Coke is still polluting," said Jackie James-Creedon, Kenmore resident and community activist in Kenmore-Tonawanda. She said  high benzene levels have been reduced, but she wants them reduced even more. 

"Benzene levels have been reduced.  It's better, but as far as what I'm interested in, I'm interested in reducing levels even further," said James-Creedon.

NYPIRG critical of Honeywell for mercury emissions

Dec 22, 2011
Jim Pastrick / WBFO News

Standing in the rain in front of Buffalo City Hall Wednesday morning, representatives of the New York Public Interest Research Group released a new report that takes Honeywell Corporation to task for its role in lobbying against legislation that would provide for capturing discarded mercury-containing thermostats in New York.

NYPIRG's Joseph Stelling told WBFO's Jim Pastrick that emissions data from the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation point to an incinerator in Western New York as one that emits large quantities mercury into the air.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

The largest suburb in Western New York is making an overhaul of its garbage and recycling system.  And like the City of Buffalo, Amherst will soon offer large totes to collect more material that can be recycled.

The Town Supervisor of Amherst says the new system will be good for the environment and the town's budget.

When Amherst Town Supervisor Barry Weinstein talks about the new contract for picking up trash and recycling that begins in January, one phrase keeps coming up:   “And there’s more," said Weinstein.

Declining health of Lake Erie

Dec 15, 2011
WBFO News file photo

Back in the 70’s Lake Erie was called a dead lake because of pollution that resulted in little or no oxygen in a large part of the lake.

Today the lake is in declining health again from a number of sources. WBFO contributor Ray Marks takes a look at the issue.

NPR's Poisoned Places in America Series: Tonawanda Coke

Nov 10, 2011
WBFO News file photo

For decades, vast quantities of cancer-causing benzene and other toxic emissions emanated from the dilapidated Tonawanda Coke plant on the banks of Niagara River.

Thanks only to a group of sick people who live near the plant, federal and state regulators have started cracking down on this facility. High-tech monitoring shows benzene emissions were 30 times what the plant was reporting.

And that was after the plant had started to clean up.